Thursday, October 3, 2013



I’m dreading this next question. Str’ee Collective, I’ve avoided talking about you. There really isn’t much to say. First, you tipped off your landing sites by making weird symbols in their crops.

Your first wave was against isolated farming communities with no military value.

You attacked naked.

And you were defeated because you were allergic to water, a substance that covers seventy-five percent of the planet’s surface.

So what was your reason for coming to this deathtrap of a planet in the first place?

STR’EE: This system is close to our enemies. From there, we can launch attacks directed at their home worlds.

WAR HAWK: I must say I’m shocked. I had no idea that the race behind the worst of the large scale invasions, worse the Vuralans or the Tritonians, that you would be the ones to come with a legitimate rational for invading the Earth.

Or is it?

I don’t believe you. Not just because you invaded a planet full of a substance that’s lethal to you without wearing any clothes. But if strategic position had been your goal, there were better ways to go about it.

Let’s review. Strategic position. What is it?

It’s the idea that the planet itself isn’t important, but that it occupies space that’s valuable in military terms. This assumes you’re already at war with another spacefaring entity.

As you may or may not know, starships use up a lot of energy. It’s not easy to bend time and space and reach a distant star that’s light years away. There are drawbacks.

When are there not?

Ships can only jump so far head at one time. That jump uses a tremendous amount of energy. That depletes your anti-matter fuel. Therefore, you need to make a certain number of pit stops along the way to refuel. Also, to reload on things like food, and air out the old heap. Most people don’t realize how badly those things stink after just a couple of days.

That brings us back to Earth. Now maybe that stupid frigging little rock just might be in the perfect position for your next major assault. Maybe it’s exactly halfway between your main base and your target, like the Str’ee claim. It might be the best staging area for your big operation.

This makes sense.

Don’t congratulate yourselves yet, Str’ee. There’s a pretty big “But” here.

But it makes absolutely no sense whatsoever to invade the planet. You’re here for one fight, and you’re starting another, totally unrelated war?

Why open a secondary campaign that will take up tons of resources when the real enemy is still light years away? Why invest all that manpower when your primary enemy is still at his home base? Remember, he actually has energy shields and a space fleet that you have to overcome. His planetary defense network probably stretches all the way to the outer edge of his system, if not further. How are you going to quickly conquer a planet of six billion and still have enough soldiers and resources to take on an opponent who isn’t two centuries behind you? Worse yet, if you become too entangled in a fight on Earth, your enemy will show up sooner or later, and then you’ll really be in a jam.

If the Str’ee collective was telling the truth, then their failure on Earth would have had catastrophic consequences for the rest of their race. The loss of the Earth invasion force might have tilted the balance in favor of their enemies.

That’s why I say there’s no reason to invade. In this scenario, we’re not actually focusing on the planet, at all. We’re talking about its entire solar system. If you want to be really specific, we’re talking about Earth’s sun. A solar system’s position in the cosmos is determined by its largest objects: the sun or suns and, to a lesser extent, the large gas giants.

You don’t need to control Earth to refuel. We’ve already been over how there are plenty of resources elsewhere in the solar system, and how the planet doesn’t have the space fleet to protect them, or even claim them. And we’ve talked about setting up space habs and bases prior to an invasion. Compared to creating a new home for billions of colonists, or creating bases for millions of invasion troops, setting up a refueling station is as easy as falling down a flight of stairs. For those of you who don’t know how easy that is, meet me by the stairwell after the lecture and I’ll show you.

You could set up shop and never even tip your hand that you’re there. In fact, you and your opponent could wage numerous battles in the solar system and never even touch the Earth.

So nice effort, Str’ee. You came a lot closer than any of these other nitwits. But I don’t buy your excuse, either. That’s not why you came to Earth.

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